Thursday, September 20, 2012

Dog and Cat Days of Summer

Zephyr, Astro, and Kenda having an early morning romp.
With summer coming to an end I wanted to get in some of the other fun that we had this summer.  Early in the summer Tammy contacted me and said her friend's mom and dad (Kim), who had recently adopted a greyhound, were visiting from Pennsylvania.  Kim had been talking about a blog he had found that was about two greyhounds that run free in the forest who had to live near here.  As it turns out we are friends with Tammy and Kenda and we were all able to get together for an early morning hike.

Kenda, Tammy, Zephyr, Kim, Astro, and me.
This was the first time that I had actually met someone through the blog and it was really cool.  Quite a coincidence that they had seen the blog in Pennsylvania, were visiting family here in town, and we had common friends.  When I started this blog I thought it would just be a fun way to share pictures with friends and family.  Now I feel like we have friends around the world because of the blog.

Riley and Pablo enjoying the summer warmth.
The kitties spent a lot of time relaxing and having fun in the backyard.  Luckily Riley and Pablo are content with roaming around the yard.  Since Pablo has been feeling better he was much more active and even attempted some hunting this summer.

Pretty girl on a fence post in the pines.
Annie on the other hand is an explorer.  Many years ago on an October evening this girl showed up at the front door full of love and smelling a bit like skunk.  She was healthy and purring away.  I was sure someone would see one of the thirteen flyers I put up and claim her.  We had four cats at the time.  At first I thought (okay, I kind of hoped) that she was pregnant, but then she came into season.  I've always wondered if she had a litter before she moved in with us.

"Hmm, Which way should I go Astro?"
Annie has never forgotten her traveling ways and loves to go for a good walkabout.  I do my best to keep track of her and round her up from her adventures.  She's never gone further than one or two houses away, but more than once she has kept herself hidden while I call and look for her for what seems an eternity.  Of course, just as I reach full panic mode she shows up close by.

Zephyr and Astro had fun whether indoors or outdoors.  School has started and I've been back to work for over a month.  The other day a neighbor told me that she had heard them barking it up a few times after I'd left for work in the morning.  She thought maybe I had left them outside, but realized they were in the house having a grand time.  It made me wonder what really goes on when I'm at work.  I know they had a grand time the other day because I came home to find a previously half full big bag of pig's ears (that I should have put away) completely empty.  Their bellies did not have a grand time that night.

Catching some Z's

The happy house painter.
While the dogs and cats relaxed at home I did a little summer work.  The most fun thing was helping my friend Kerry, who has a home improvement business, paint the outside of two houses.  I've always liked taking care of things around my house, but this was the first time I'd done painting outside.  I think I was a tad bit of a turtle and may have paid a little too much attention to details.  It's hard to remember that no one is going to see the tiny bit of wood that's not 100% covered with paint when it's on top of the house.

Kerry and the happy house owner.
We actually only did touch-up on this house; painting the far side, a lot of the trim, and the front and back decks.  Kerry was super nice to trust that a third grade teacher would be a reliable assistant.  But, what do you expect from a fellow hound dog agility person.  She has two Dachshund's that have made it to the excellent level.  I didn't get pictures of the other house, but we painted all of its outside.  I really became more confident about going fairly high on a ladder (although I left the peaks for Kerry) and I went on the roof many times.

The best thing was I actually felt like I had some upper body strength in my arms, shoulders, back, and neck.  I get migraine headaches and often have muscle pain in my back, shoulders, and neck.  It was amazing how good I felt and the pain was completely gone.  I've actually been successful at keeping the new upper body strength with hand weights and some core body exercises I learned in physical therapy a couple years ago.  I even had to increase from a 10 to a 15 pound weight.  Usually when I head back to school and stress in the fall I get a lot of pain in those areas.  I've still had some of the pain, but the improvement has been amazing.

Not a drop was left in the cups.
Summer is the season of ice cream and nobody was left out this year.  I finally bought some Frosty Paws and Zephyr and Astro loved them. 

"Oh, this stuff is really horrible Annie.  I don't blame you for not wanting any."
I gave each kitty a spoonful too, but Pablo was the only one who was interested.  I was surprised, but Pablo sure appreciated the extra spoonfuls.

Riley likes to roll in the dirt too.
A mole (I think) has taken up residence in our backyard.  Luckily it seems to have kept its tunnels and holes in a rocky area that Zephyr and Astro don't run in much.  The cats have been doing their best to rid the yard of the beasty, but they say it's a coward and won't show its face when they are sitting outside of its hole.  I think I am just going to try some of the vibrating sticks that you put in the ground.

"Yep, these sheets are safe for you to sleep on Mom."
There were lots of chores to do and I always had plenty of help.

"I was just trying to offer moral support and this is what I get."
Some people were not thrilled with being recruited to help with chores.

Flat dogs.
And, when the temperatures reached their height everyone spread out and took a nap.  It's been a great summer!


jet said...

Your kitties are very pretty! It is good that everyone had a good summer. Also, I find physical activity always helps with back type pain in the long run, so keep it up :D

Sue said...

So glad Zephyr and Astro have been enjoying the woods. Had to laugh at the pigs ear incident:)

gyeong said...

Looks like the kitties enjoyed their summer as much as the boys did.

What Remains Now said...

A great summer and I hope it is a wonderful school year for you.

Greyhounds CAN Sit said...

You've had such a busy, productive Summer! I'm pleased the house painting has given you some upper body strength, all I've gotten out of my painting is upper body aches and pains, lol:) Painting is hard work, I did a couple of years house painting but I was younger then and it didn't worry me.

How awesome to meet up with some blogging friends and even get to hike with them:)

I must try the dogs on Frosty Paws this Summer, although I'll have to make them as they aren't in the shops here.